How to Furby-ize Your Favorite Album Cover
By Erin Kim
Ellie gets Furby-ized!
Ellie gets Furby-ized!
Yahoo! Music took a moment to pick Winter's Furby-addled brain to find out just how this genius concept came to be…
Y! MUSIC: How did Furby Living start? Which was your first Furby album cover?
WINTER: Some time last October, I got a sudden obsession with Furbies, mostly due to one of my favorite Internet personalities, Joseph Birdsong, buying one of the new 2012 Furbies and writing hilarious tweets about it. I just thought they were so cute and started reading up on everything Furby-related. My friends and family thought I was going slightly crazy. I'm not totally sure how I came up with the idea of recreating album covers, but it was originally inspired by stan culture, I guess! A lot of the earlier covers were kind of based around the "Nekci Menij" show, in a way, which is an animated show on YouTube parodying pop stars and their fanbases. The first cover I made was M.I.A.'s /\/\ /\ Y /\ , which is one of my favorite albums of all time. There's honestly barely anything edited on that one, though; I just thought it would be an easy one to start with. After that I made MDNA by Madonna, which was the first cover that started spreading.
Y! MUSIC: Do you have any real toy Furbies? Which one is your favorite? When did you get your first Furby?
WINTER: Yes, of course! My favorite generation is the original 1998 Furby, mostly because I feel its look is the most iconic out of all Furby models. I own four of those, one 2005 Furby and one 2012 Furby. I had one when I was younger as well, when they were first released, but the Furbies I own now are all newly bought late last year. I don't play with them as such; I just love the concept and phenomenon of Furby!
Y! MUSIC: How do you make these Furby album covers? Are they hard to create?
WINTER: I first set up simple lighting and take the photos I need — of the Furby's face, feet, ears, wigs etc., depending on what I need. The rest is just heavy Photoshopping! The difficulty varies a lot, but most album covers are face close-ups, which is usually fairly simple. What takes extra time is, for example, editing open mouths, making limbs, changing the eyes. Sometimes the fonts are custom-made as well. In the end, it's mostly about capturing the expression of the artist and the aesthetic of the cover art. Proportions can also be tricky, as I don't want them to look too human, so I usually chub everything up. That takes up more space at the same time, though, so I always need to figure out a good composition before I start.